27 SES 03 C, Textbooks in Teaching and Learning Social Sciences
The aim of the research was to find out how teachers of primary schools use textbook materials and think about them.
The major part of textbook research focuses on textbooks as products, and analyses their content with regard to its characteristics and qualities. A lesser amount of research studies examines the role textbooks play in teaching. Because of the above stated fact, researches consider this type of research justifiable and needed (Walker, Horsley, 2006; Sikorová 2011).
It is the shift in the emphasis in which the educational content and didactic methods in primary education are perceived together with the European curricula reforms that strengthened teachers’ decision-making power with regard to the selection of subject matter. Both previously mentioned facts together with the awareness of specific character that goes with the education of primary school teachers led to significant changes in teachers’ needs related to educational materials. (Stara, Krcmarova, 2014) A research dedicated to the role of textbooks in teaching and to the way teachers perceive this role can bring valuable data that could be utilised for the design of new educational materials, teacher education as well as for the implementation of innovations in curriculum.
The research results (Sikorová 2011; Stará, Krčmářová, 2014; Hiebert et al 2003) reveal that textbook materials play a fundamental part in the process of lesson planning and implementation.
The research we will refer here is a partial qualitative research focused on using textbook materials by primary school teachers when dealing with modern history topics. The authors participated at similar research projects focusing on different parts of primary school curricula. These partial research studies (Stará, Dvořáková, Dvořák 2010; Stará, Krčmářová 2014) revealed that as opposed to how textbooks are used at the lower secondary schools, as revealed by the research (Sikorová 2011), the researched Czech primary school teachers were significantly influenced by methodical guidebooks (teacher’s books) when planning and implementing lessons (probably more in case of the untraditional and new curricular topics, where primary teachers feel lack of professional preparation). Some of them perceive textbook materials as an important source of content and didactic knowledge for teachers, more of them are in favour of curriculum implementation, which is called curriculum enactment (Pinar 2004).
According to these qualitative research studies (Stará, Dvořáková, Dvořák 2010), beliefs related to curriculum content are also very important for primary school teachers as well as beliefs of what is important to teach pupils (attitudes emphasizing stress on the development of social, personal and communication key competencies against attitudes that emphasize content knowledge and skills related to the content of individual scientific disciplines).
These qualitative research approaches shed light on how textbooks are used by primary school teachers and which bring deeper information about the role textbook materials play in primary schools.
This paper will refer about the results of an empirical study based on observation of instruction at primary modern history lessons and interviews with teachers of these lessons.
DVOŘÁK, Dominik; DVOŘÁKOVÁ, Michaela; STARÁ, Jana. Design based research - výzkum učebnic prováděný jejich tvůrci. In KNECHT, Petr; JANÍK, Tomáš; et al. Učebnice z pohledu pedagogického výzkumu. Brno: Paido, 2008. s. 81 - 89. ISBN 978-80-7315-174-4. HIEBERT, James; et al. Teaching Mathematics in Seven Countries. Results from the TIMSS 1999 Video Study [online]. U. S. Department of Education, Institute of Education Sciences: National Center for Education Statistics, 2004. [cit. 2013-04-08]. Dostupný z: http://nces.ed.gov/pubs2003/2003013.pdf PEACOCK, A., & GATES, S. (2000). Newly qualified primary teachers’ perceptions of the roles of text materials in teaching science. Research in Science & Technological Education, 18(2), 155–171. PINAR, William; et al. Understanding curriculum: an introduction to the study of historical and contemporary curriculum discourses. 6. vyd. New York: Peter Lang, 2006. 1143 s. ISBN 978-0-8204-2601-3. SIKOROVÁ, Zuzana. Učitel a učebnice: užívání učebnic na 2. stupni základních škol. 1. vyd. Ostrava: Ostravská univerzita v Ostravě, Pedagogická fakulta, 2011. 127 s. ISBN 978-80-7368-923-0. SPILKOVÁ, Vladimíra; et al. Proměny primárního vzdělávání v ČR. 1. vyd. Praha: Portál, 2005. 312 s. ISBN 80-7178-942-9. SQUIRE, Kurt; et al. Designed Curriculum and Local Culture: Acknowledging the Primacy of Classroom Culture. Science Education. Wiley, 2003, vol. 87, no. 4, s. 468 - 489. ISSN 1098-237X. STARÁ, Jana; DVOŘÁKOVÁ, Michaela; DVOŘÁK, Dominik. Design based research (DBR) a tři učitelé: setkání záměru inovace a reality implementace. In VÁŇOVÁ, Růžena; KRYKORKOVÁ, Hana; et al. Učitel v současné škole. Praha: Univerzita Karlova, 2010. s. 203 - 218. ISBN 978-80-7308-301-4. STARÁ, Jana; KRČMÁŘOVÁ, Tereza. Užívání nových učebnicových materiálů učiteli 1. stupně ZŠ. Pedagogická orientace, 1, 2014 (will be published). WALKER, Richard; HORSLEY, Mike. Textbook pedagogy: a sociocultural analysis of effective teaching and learning. In MCINERNEY, Dennis; DOWSON, Martin; VAN ETTEN, Shawn; (eds.). Effective schools. 1. vyd. Greenwich: Information Age Publishing, 2006. s. 105 - 133. ISBN 978-159-3114-923.
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